It’s Friday, and my heart is so damn happy. For about a million reasons. So let’s just hop right into it with Friday favorites!

1. Impromptu Date Nights | That guy I married took me out for a surprise dinner date last night! Partially to celebrate 6 months of marriage, but mostly because we’ll take any excuse to splurge on a fancy dinner.

Tay and I have always chosen The Keg as our go-to restaurant for celebrating relationship milestones, so of course that’s where we wound up.

My favorite thing on the menu is the bacon wrapped filet with veggies and a twice-baked potato that is to die for. Last night I paired it with a delicious glass of chardonnay, and oh yes, I was in heaven.

Our sweet server asked if we were celebrating anything special, and we told her we just were using our “six month anniversary” as an excuse to treat ourselves to an awesome meal. But at the end of the meal she surprised us with a free dessert and champagne! This Swiss mocha ice cream on Oreo crust was unbelievable.

I cheers’d to 6 more months of marriage and Taylor was all, “REALLY.” and looked at me like I was a moron. I was like, “HEY – baby steps, bro.

Basically we ate until we wanted to throw up and I honestly can’t think of anything in the entire world more romantic than that.

2. This video from the Dove Legacy Campaign | This has been around for a few  weeks, but I stumbled across it Monday. I was a total basket case by the end of the 2 minutes and 55 seconds. It’s a really remarkable video that shows just how important it is for women (and especially mothers) to set a positive example of loving their bodies.

3. This new favorite snack | Oh my God, y’all. These things are the best. Salty, greasy potato chips are a huge vice of mine. I just crave crunch. I found these a few weeks back at Target, and I’m loving grabbing a handful for a little snack during work. They’ve got a few flavors that I need to try out, but right now the simple sea salt are doing a great job of satisfying my cravings.

4. This article about dating text messages vs. married text messages. | I had a good laugh reading this one. It’s totally true. They compared the most frequently used words and the time of day most texts are exchanged. A quick and pretty entertaining read.

5. This girl’s bachelorette bash! | This weekend is all about celebrating this bride-to-be! I’m so so excited for a weekend filled with penis straws, little black dresses, and dancing until dawn! Emily, your bachelorette party is going to be epic, and I CAN’T FREAKING WAIT to party with you! 

What are your Friday favorites?! What are you looking forward to this weekend?

Happy Friday!



  • Your date night sounded amazing. I’ve been dating my boyfriend for a little over 8 years (known him since the second grade) and people always assume we’re getting married like tomorrow and while I’m thinking some day we will I’m alwayyys like “pump the brakes guys…baby steps” haha so I got you. & you’re 1000% right…nothing more romantic than eating your weight in food.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Hahahaha, when people are like, here’s to 50 years of wedded bliss I’m like WHOA. Can’t we just see how the first one goes? I’d hate to over commit.ReplyCancel

  • The food from your date night looks delicious! That cake! I am drooling.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I would be lying if I told you the Oreo crust wasn’t my favorite part.ReplyCancel

  • I want you to know, I just went and bought Pop Chips from the vending machine at work because a) you told me they’re delicious, and b) it’s 10:22 a.m. and I’m already hungry for lunch. YOU WERE RIGHT THEY’RE DELIGHTFUL. Happy 6 months you crazy kids. :) ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I WISH MY VENDING MACHINE SOLD POP CHIPS. All they have are m&m’s and flaming hot cheetos.ReplyCancel

  • Everything about that meal sounds amazing. Happy 6 months!ReplyCancel

  • I love the sweet and salty pop chips. a lot. My exciting weekend plans are my bachelorette! It’s going to be a ton of fun tomorrow night.ReplyCancel

  • Bacon, steak, penis straws… Sounds like a legit weekend line up.ReplyCancel

I’ve got to be totally honest with you.

For as much as I love running, there’s also a handful of things that I hate. So in an ode to the late Heath Ledger (may his beautiful face rest in peace), today I’m talking about ten of those.

1 // Salt. I didn’t notice this until I started training for Cowtown Half. And I don’t know if it’s something about my body chemistry that changed when I started running “longer” distances consistently, but now any run over a half an hour leaves me covered in salt. And the runs that are 2 + hours? SO MUCH SALT. I feel like I could salt an extra large Mickey D’s fry with what I’ve got stuck to my face. Is that gross? Whatever. Don’t care.

2 // Pressure. Because I’ve thrown my love for running out there into the Universe, it feels like I’m always chatting with someone about it. I really do love it, but I also feel an overwhelming amount of guilt those times that someone asks me how running is going, and it’s been nearly a week since I’ve laced up my running shoes. Realistically – putting that kind of pressure on myself is ridiculous. Saying “no” when someone asks me if I’ve run today should not be a big deal. Sometimes I’m tired. Sometimes I’m hurting. Sometimes I would really just rather sleep in, or watch an extra episode of Property Brothers. And none of that means that I’m any less of a runner. But there’s still a small part of me that can’t help but feel a little like a failure for not being 100% dedicated 100% of the time.

3 // Low Battery Chirp. I’m married to my Garmin. I can’t even tell you the last time I went for a run with a naked wrist. But because I use that bad boy so often, every so often there will come a day when I (of course) forget to charge it. Then I get to run to the soundtrack of a low battery chirp, never knowing if and/or when it’s going to give up on me and crap out completely.

4 // Chafing. Ugh. Just UGH. I have a dream that one day…I’ll be able to run without my thighs flapping together. I mean it, I can’t run ten feet without Body Glide. It’s a curse that has absolutely nothing to do with my affinity for beer and french fries. Right?

5 // Time. There will never, EVER be enough hours in the day. Especially when you’re training for a marathon. Working 9-10 hour days, coming home, cooking a decent meal, finding time to blog, and actually hanging out with my husband for more than ten minutes is a LOT to juggle in one day. Then trying to add running in to that daily mix? My god. I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

6 // Friday Nights IN. Ugh, this one is hard. I hate hate hate hate hate hate HATE saying no to a crazy night out. I hate knowing that my friends are out there having a good time, pounding back burgers and shots of fireball without me. Really – the nerve. But if I’m going to be awake with enough energy to run 14 miles first thing on a Saturday morning, my belly has to be burger-less, and my butt has to be in bed by 10.

7 // Money. People who say running is basically a free sport are LYING. Running might be the most convenient of all sports, but there’s no way it can be the cheapest. No freakin’ way.  You need good shoes, decent clothes that don’t contribute to the aforementioned chafing issue, and HI – have you ever registered for a race? We’re talkin’ anywhere from $50-$150 just for a decently organized one. My bank account bleeds cash on a regular basis - all in the name of running.

8 // Foam Rolling & Stretching. It’s not that I hate it, it’s just I don’t want to take the time to do it. You know what I’d rather do? Lay down. Or cook dinner. Or have someone spoon Nutella into my mouth for me. But nooooo, I’ve got to sit down and stretch (OW) so that my muscles don’t spaz out and I’m actually able to walk the next day.

9 // Spit. If ladylike is what you’re seeking, then please, just keep on walking. Because I am such a spitter. I can’t run a half a mile with out hocking up something completely disgusting. Thank God Taylor refuses to run with me. That would do wonders for our love life. (Not.)

10 // Cars/Bikes/Anything or Anyone that gets in my way. WHYYYYYYY do you have to place yourself directly in my path? Just WHY. It seems like there’s always someone or something in my way. Lady pushing a stroller? Must you really. Toddler riding a tricycle? That asshole needs to be taught a lesson. Car that decides to stop DIRECTLY in the pedestrian crosswalk just as I’m in the middle of my fastest mile?? THIS HAS TO BE A CONSPIRACY. If everybody could just do me a solid, and be aware of where I am at all times and adjust their placement accordingly – I’d really appreciate it.

So yeah, there are some things I hate about running. But then this happens.

And I fall in love all over again.




  • Further to #10 – DOGS. Oh, your owners let you play unsupervised in the front yard? That’s cool. I’m sure it’ll be my fault when you attack my ankles, chase me down the street, and then get lost.

    I love dogs. LOVE dogs.

    I hate unsupervised dogs while I’m running. HATE them.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Haha YES! I haven’t had to deal with that one too too much, but it is a little terrifying when you don’t know whether a dog is coming to lick you or attack you. Also – PILES of dog poop. Sick.ReplyCancel

  • I really do not understand the salt thing. Does that mean that I need to replace all the salt that is now on my face?? ugh and people/objects that get in my way are the worst!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I DON’T EITHER! I don’t get it!! Someone else needs to do some research on that and get back to me.ReplyCancel

  • I feel your pain on this! I used to run on a daily basis and the struggle is real, particularly staying in on a Friday night in order to complete Saturday’s run. My running actually came to a halt when my social life picked up and now I find it much easier to use workout DVDS. They tend to be shorter and work more muscles for strength building purposes, which I prefer now!

    Plus getting up the energy to run during the colder months is not the one!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      It’s SO hard. But I find I’m a lot more motivated to run in the winter than in the warmer spring and summer months. Mainly because Texas.ReplyCancel

  • I already can’t stand when people block my path and that’s just when I’m walking. I think if you’re running and obviously being more fit and awesome than the average slow walker/stroller pusher/tricycling toddler/lethargic dog, you should automatically get free reign over the path. Just run them over. I bet next time they’ll get out of your way.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Bahahaha. I don’t mind people being OUT there, but I do mind them taking up the whole damn path. Or being on the phone and not being aware of their surroundings. SELFISH PEOPLE NEED TO MOVE BECAUSE I’M OBVIOUSLY MORE IMPORTANT.ReplyCancel

  • Kim

    1) I’m digging your list-posts.
    2) I’m not a runner, but I do bike and I can’t stand it either when people take up the WHOLE FRIGGIN path. Especially when I’m coming towards you and so you CLEARLY see me and then you still don’t move. And then it’s my fault if I almost hit you. Gahhhh.
    3) I love that you love the Property Brothers. Because I loooove the Property Brothers. They’ve been a great consolation since Zachary Levi is now dead to me.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Hahahahahaha. Oh man, I forgot your are still in mourning over ZL.ReplyCancel

  • Erin

    yes to the low battery chirp. and then your run becomes a race against the life of your garmin. I start getting all Grey’s Anatomy and willing it to live and thinking, ‘don’t you give up on me now! you have so much to live for!!!!’ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      BAhahahahahaha. That was awesome. And YES – so true! It’s like the whole run would all be for nothing if I don’t have the data to back it up!ReplyCancel

  • […] was inspired by Nat’s post over at, and I’m going to shamelessly steal her idea – but put a twist on […]ReplyCancel

It’s a little weird to admit, but I’m obsessed with “day in the life” posts. I love sitting behind my computer screen all creepy like, feeling like I’m getting a secret glimpse into a blogger’s daily life. I love knowing what time people wake up, what brand of toothpaste they use, and what they eat for lunch. It really thrills me.

Oh, my sad little life. 

And as much as I over-share here in my little corner of the internet, I’ve never actually done a day in MY life post. You’re shocked, I know. But I believe it’s time to change that. I now present to you, NSB’s very first Day In the RIVETING Life post. Brace yourself.

4:30am // Wake the hell up.

Turn on lamp. Rub eyes. Sit there for a minute before deciding that I work really hard, and I deserve a snooze. So snooze I did. And nine minutes later, I was up and at ‘em. (Taylor is usually gone by 5 most mornings, but he had a big test, so he was up at 3:45 and out of the house by 4am. I know. It’s terrible.)

4:42am // Head into my home office. AKA the corner that houses the foam roller, the chair that Taylor hates, and the $20 Target ottoman.

This is usually when I make the morning blog rounds and/or work on any current or upcoming NSB posts. This morning I caught up my Bloglovin’ feed and added the finishing touches to this post before publishing. I also spent a solid 10 minutes watching YouTube videos because mornings are for productivity.

5:45am // Shower time. I was going to take pictures of that but then I realized my phone isn’t waterproof and I was like UGGHHH.

6:00am // I emerge from shower clean and ready to take on the world, but immediately realized the YouTube-ing put me about ten minutes behind schedule. The frantic and half-assed blow drying and curling begins and ends, and then it’s time to put on the  mask.

6:55am // DONE.

6:57am // Set out running clothes for the evening.

7:00am // Time to make the bed. I’m not proud of it, but coming home to an unmade bed after a long day of work has the power to put me in an instantly pissy mood. So I really really try to make the bed most days of the week. Our bed is pretty simple, so it really only takes about two minutes.

7:05am // BREAKFAST.

Overnight oats in a jar recipe from Katie Did What with peanut butter and banana.

With turkey bacon because MEAT.

7:30am // Head to work. Catch a killer pink sunrise and attempt a photo whilst driving.

7:39am // Arrive at work (I know – rough commute). Take the stairs because of some stupid commitment I made to only myself. Five floors is a long f’in way.

8:30am // Work a bit, and then it’s coffee time. A little Folger’s classic with dulce de leche creamer is spot on. We have a Keurig at home, but I still almost always wait until work for my cup of coffee. Honestly, Folgers tastes better and I like the 67 million creamer choices my office offers.

10:30am // Work. Boring. Time for snack. Today it’s  a little pack of peaches.

I was about five bites in when I glanced at the label and realized my peaches were sitting in artificially sweetened water. I had a minor freakout (sucralose scares the shit out of me) and immediately chunked the rest in the trash.

Work. Work. More work.

12:30pm // LUNCH TIME. Sunday night leftovers – chicken taco with black beans, chips, and Chipotle guac.

I get an hour break for lunch. Sometimes I leave the office, sometimes I don’t. Today is a pretty busy Monday and I’m still catching up from when I was sick last week, so I opt to stay in. After lunch I was still hungry, so I munched on some carrots and ranch.

Work. Still more work. Get bored, take a selfie.

2:45pm // Nutella break. Nom-licious.

3:20pm // Getting antsy. Opt for a quick trip outside and a walk around the building to wake me up a little.

Take the stairs AGAIN on the way back up. It hurt more this time.

3:28pm // Return back to my desk and see I’ve missed my daily Taylor call. Call him back and chat about absolutely nothing.

5:27pm // FREEDOM. JK – just time to leave work. It’s a gorgeous day and I start to get depressed when I hop in my car and realize how much I’ve missed by being cooped up in the office all day.

Snap a photo of my favorite spot on my drive home. Safely, of course.

5:40pm // I’m home, and Taylor is thrilled. JUST KIDDING. I force him to take this photo and he is less than enthused. But he’s pretty good at faking it, no?

5:45pm // Set out ingredients for a quick dinner that Taylor can get started on while I’m running. Try not to pass judgment on the girl who had an artificial sweetener freakout. I still like my enriched macaroni product and buttery garlic bread.

6:00pm // Time for a RUN. According to the training plan, tonight it’s four miles. The sunset looks all fall and stuff and it makes my heart happy.

6:38pm // Snap a quick selfie before heading home.

6:40pm // I walk in the door to a house that smells like ground turkey and find Taylor standing by the stove literally watching water boil. I make fun of him, HARD. Then I shut up when I realize he’s making dinner and I’m lying on the ground in a pool of my own sweat.

7:00pm // DINNER TIME. We’re old people, and we actually never eat this late, I just wanted to get my run in right after work. It’ll probably start being this way from now on with fall and daylight savings coming up.

7:15pm //  Cleanup and pack leftovers for our lunches tomorrow.

7:40pm // COUCH TIME. Blog/watch Property Brothers (which is now on Netflix in case you didnt’ know).

Force one more selfie and ignore the comment from Taylor about how terrible I smell.

8:45pm // Hop in the shower. Again, lack of waterproof camera. I know you’re all disappointed.

9:10pm // Taylor hops in the shower and I camp out in bed watching New Girl and making the the last of the blog rounds for the evening.

9:48pm // LIGHTS OUT!

And that, my friends, was a complete and total, no holds barred, day in the life.

I told you it was riveting.



PS – The lovely Sara & Liz of Lady Bits Podcast were kind enough to feature me on their Real Talk Blog today. Click HERE to check it out!



  • Wow! You wake up really early! I’m a morning person and wake up naturally at 5 something as long as I went to bed at a decent time, but 4 something just sounds crazy early to me.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I agree. Waking up in the 4 o’clock hour is hard mentally, it just FEELS so much earlier! But it also makes me feel like I’m getting SO much more time in my mornings. I don’t always wake up quite that early, sometimes it’s 5 or later too! But I usually have more energy and ambition at the beginning of the week and it tends to trail as the week goes on!ReplyCancel

  • WE USE THE SAME BB CREAM. I think you would appreciate that I got up at 455 this morning and I sort of feel productive like you buuuuuuut your days are actually WAY more productive than mine and now I’m insecure also your hair is beautiful and I want it.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      HUSH. Also does it blow your mind that those tiny little things of BB cream are like never ending? They last FOREVERRR and I don’t understand. It’s like the Mary Poppins bag.

      And yes, I’m so so proud.ReplyCancel

  • GIRL. Nobody should be awake that early. You cray. But seriously. ;) Also, I enjoyed this post immensely, I may just do one of my own again. It’s been awhile. And the water boiling thing made me laugh a lot. I would deffffinitely make fun of my husband for that too. Oh, aren’t they just so lucky to have us?


    • natalie

      Hahaha it was unreal. He stood there staring for a good ten minutes. I was just like – you CANNOT be serious. The phrase “a watched pot NEVER boils” exists for a reason, bro!ReplyCancel

  • This was actually my first time reading a Day In The Life post, but I see what you’re saying – for some reason, they are super intriguing!

    Also, I’m super jealous that you can wake up that early and still function. I set my alarm for 7am and usually hit snooze until 7:40! And my bedtime is the same as yours…I think I need help. haha.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Hahahahaha – I laughed HARD just then. Oh to be able to get that much sleep! I’m so jealoussss. Besides having to be at work early, I just really enjoy that precious morning alone time.

      PS – I just read your post about the elephant sanctuary. I now need guacamole AND that sweatshirt.ReplyCancel

  • Property Brothers is on Netflix!? Oh boy, my evenings just got less productive.

    I’m with you…Day in the Life posts intrigue me. Thanks for sharing yours!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Well anytime! And yes, you’re welcome in advance for the HOURS wasted! :) ReplyCancel

  • Isn’t it crazy how fun it is to ready about other people’s lives? I am impressed that you wake up that early to do blog stuff!ReplyCancel

  • 1. I also love day in the life posts. My husband thinks it’s creepy. He always looks over and is like “oh who’s that?” and then I have to re-explain how blogging works and how it is perfectly normal to read about/look at pictures of people you have never met.

    2. My favorite part of the post was that dinner was from 7:00-7:15. Now I am curious how long it takes me to eat dinner…

    3. You just made me hungry for spaghetti, nutella and chipotle.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Hahaha, why do husbands have such a hard time understanding?! And yes, that 15 minutes was probably an over exaggeration. It seems like I spend all this time cooking, we sit down, and then like FIVE SECONDS later it’s gone. UGH.ReplyCancel

  • You get up at 04:30, and go to bed around 10pm…. that is pretty hardcore.
    I get up at 06:30 (actually that’s not true, my alarm goes off at 06:30, I actually drag my ass out of bed around 07:10) and then after going to work and dinner I’m usually back in bed at 9:30 pm, exhausted.

    Shit. I’m an old person.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Well last night I downed an entire bottle of wine, went to bed at 10:15, and I slept in until 6 and I feel like shit. I’M an old person.ReplyCancel

  • Erin

    loooove that blanket on your bed. also where are your running shorts from? i love the kind with a thick elastic waistband!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Thanks! I snagged that blanket at Home Goods during Christmas last year for $20! Taylor hates it, which makes me love it even more.

      The shorts are New Balance Impact shorts. They are honest to God, the BEST shorts I’ve ever run in. Period. They were $50 which killed me to buy, but I honestly need to go buy another pair because I want to run in them every day. They are so so soft and comfy and I don’t chafe in them which is also a plus!ReplyCancel

  • I have to admit, that while I’m not usually into day in the life posts – I loved this. You are hilarious.

    And I will faithfully stand next to texas cheese toast til I die – despite also thinking that fake processed sugars are of the devil…

    Glad I’m not alone.ReplyCancel

  • You make me want to wake up earlier! I usually am up by 5:45 every work day morning, but I never have enough time! Also, isn’t it so hard getting a walk or run in now that it’s getting darker earlier?? My dog hates it!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Ugh YES! So much harder. And I’m so tired so much earlier. AND the time hasn’t even changed yet!ReplyCancel

  • I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!! This one of the best “Day in the Life” posts yet. You are awesome and I commend you for getting up so darn early, you go girl. I did this post back in Aug and yours puts mine to shame! ;-)


  • I love these behind the scenes posts as well (in fact, we just did a new intro post today!). I’m super impressed with how early you wake up, and I’m obsessed with Alexandra Ferguson’s pillow line so I was thrilled to see yours in the pic!ReplyCancel

(If you’re here for the weekend recap, you’re too late. It already happened. It was a little dull, but there was a photo of a giant Hello Kitty Pez dispenser. If that interests you, click HERE to get caught up.)

There are just a handful of things about our little home that I take pride in, and one of those is my bookshelf. My collection is small, humble, and eclectic. And it’s certainly not vast or distinguished. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t littered with some fabulous but slightly embarrassing finds (think Kardashian Konfidential or John & Kate + Eight).

But every book on that shelf is there for a reason. Maybe it was a gift, or a recommendation. Maybe it was a childhood favorite, or a garage sale steal. Whatever the reason, I love them all. But there’s a small handful that make up what I’ve come to believe are the best books on my shelf.

1 // A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

A Thousand Splendid Suns is a novel that follows the tumultuous lives and relationships of two Afghan women  under the Taliban regime. Allison recommended this one to me about 4 years ago, and it didn’t take more than a couple pages to figure out why. It’s a brilliant, gripping, and beautifully written story that weighed heavily on my heart and left me begging for more.


2 // Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller

Donald Miller has been called “the voice of a new generation of evangelicals.” And for damn good reason. I first read Blue Like Jazz when I was about 16 years old. It’s another one that Allison picked up first and then immediately forced on me. (Think of how empty my bookshelf would be without that girl!) I remember reading it for the first time and finally feeling like I wasn’t alone in my questions and doubts. This book bleeds the kind of brutal honesty that I crave when it comes to religion and Christianity. It left me feeling understood and challenged, both as a struggling teenager and as a stumbling adult.


3 // Jesus Land by Julia Scheeres

I love a good memoir, and this is one of my favorites. It’s a haunting read that chronicles Julia Scheeres’ childhood growing up with two adopted black brothers and two hyper-religious but abusive parents. What I loved so much about this book was how Julia tells her really harrowing story without even the slightest tone of self-pity. She comes across as strong and resilient, yet still relatable. Her story is just so damn interesting. Jesus Land is definitely one of my favorite reads of all time.


4 // The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

Another Allison recommendation that took me way too long to finally read.  But once I started, this tragic and compelling memoir was one that I couldn’t put down. Jeannette Walls grew up with an alcoholic father and a mentally ill mother. The cast of real life characters hooked me from the very beginning. Her story is both disturbing and bittersweet, and was instantly one of my very favorites.


5 // A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah

It’s heart-wrenching and life changing. A Long Way Gone opened my eyes to a world we like to pretend does not exist. I feel like any further description I try to give of this book won’t do it justice. So I’ll just quote directly from the book’s website -

There may be as many as 300,000 child soldiers, hopped-up on drugs and wielding AK-47s, in more than fifty conflicts around the world. Ishmael Beah used to be one of them. He is one of the first to tell his story in his own words.”

6 // Other People’s Love Letters – 150 Letters You Were Never Meant to See; Edited by Bill Shapiro

Other People’s Love Letters provided such a unique experience. It reads like a coffee table book, and each page pulled me deeper and deeper in to the lives of these mystery couples. A collection of handwritten letters, emails, and notes scribbled on napkins – Other People’s Love Letters was an instant favorite.


7 // Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert

If you liked Eat, Pray, Love – you will LOVE Committed. I read Eat, Pray, Love years ago, but then last year Allison (again) told me about Committed – the follow up to Elizabeth Gilbert’s memoir in Eat, Pray, Love. It’s an open-minded and thoughtful look at what it takes to have an enduring, committed, and fulfilling relationship. Committed takes a close look into the dynamics of marriage, both modern and traditional, across the world and in her own life.


8 // Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

Lean In is one that I just finished reading. In my opinion, it’s a book for everyone. It’s empowering and eye-opening. Both for self-proclaimed feminists and those who shudder at the “f” word. It’s a truly incredible read. Sheryl Sandberg’s perspective and journey to becoming one of the most powerful women in the US today is both thought provoking and invaluable. It left me realizing how far we as women have come over the past few decades, and also how far we still have to go.

Have you read any of the above? What are the best books on your shelf? What are your must-reads?



  • I’m reading “Committed” right now…REALLY interesting read!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I love love LOVED it! Like SO MUCH. The tagline drew me in from the get-go. Making peace with marriage is HARD. I just adored every word of it. And I want to have a drink with Elizabeth Gilbert!ReplyCancel

  • I LOVED The Glass Castle. I’ve recommended it to so many. I love that it makes you look at parenting so differently.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I read it on a flight to NYC last year, and it was just so so riveting. I need to pick up more of her books!ReplyCancel

  • These all sound amazing! And also like they would add some adult legitimacy to my embarrassing collection of YA fiction.ReplyCancel

  • Really intrigued by Jesus Land based on your description of it! Thanks for this list, I’m always looking for more books to read!

    To extend the same courtesy, check out Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Definitely tops my list – it’s about a woman in her 20s who hikes the Pacific Crest Trail by herself! It’s a lot more than just the physical journey, too. Oh and “A Life Without Limits: A World Champion’s Journey” by Chrissie Wellington. This woman has made me completely love her and look up to her through her book. She’s a beautiful writer and makes every race so interesting to read about. (Like race reports? This book is full of the greatest race reports!)ReplyCancel

  • A Thousand Splendid Suns is on my favorite reads shelf as well!! Such an eye-opening read to Islamic culture and empathy for women.

    Since I see you like a lot of Christian books, I recommend John Steinbeck’s East of Eden (amazingly inspiring take on free will and the Bible) and A Severe Mercy (an autobiography of a couple who converts mid-marriage, and they were personal friends of CS Lewis so it contains his letters/advice).ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I’m always surprised of how few people have heard of A Thousand Splendid Suns and how many have heard of Kite Runner! Glad you loved it too! It was such an emotional read for me!

      Oooooh, I will definitely have to check those two out. Thanks for the recommendations!ReplyCancel

  • The Glass Castle was an amazing book and very eye opening! I’ve been wanting to read A Thousand Splendid Suns as well. You recommended some books that sound like something I would like to read so I’ll be on the look out for them now!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      You’ve definitely got to read Splendid Suns! :) ReplyCancel

  • I’ve been wanting read Lean In for a while, it sounds like a great book!ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      It’s so eye opening but also empowering! The entire time I was reading I was just like UH HUH preach sister!ReplyCancel

  • great list! love several of these.
    my curveball to throw is ‘bonhoeffer: pastor, prophet, martyr, spy.” by eric metaxas. fascinating, life changing read about my favorite theologian. there is an abridged version that i’m recommending to everyone. the full book is a major, months-long commitment. i absolutely loved it, but i was also on bed rest. i had time i could commit.

    and if you haven’t read “love does” by bob goff, then you should jump on that one, too. he’s one of donald miller’s mentors. i actually picked the book up because donald wrote the foreword. such a fun read. i loved him by the opening sentence.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      Yes! I actually have Love Does, but I haven’t read it yet, I definitely definitely need to though!ReplyCancel

  • […] NSB posts. This morning I caught up my Bloglovin’ feed and added the finishing touches to this post before publishing. I also spent a solid 10 minutes watching YouTube videos because mornings are for […]ReplyCancel

  • Somebody gave me The Glass Castle like 5 years ago and I’ve still never read it. I think I tried to but just couldn’t get into it so I”m a total failure.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      READ IT. Okay don’t read it. I forgive you for not being able to get into it. I like really dark and depressing memoirs so it was right up my alley.ReplyCancel

  • Thanks for the suggestions, I’m always adding to my reading list. Have you ever read the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho? I just finished Wild by Cheryl Strayed and I fell in love with that as well.ReplyCancel

    • natalie

      I haven’t! I’ll have to check it out!ReplyCancel

As the weeks go by, I realize more and more how little people seem to care about what I do on the weekends. And to that I’m like, YEAH, I get it. It’s not very interesting. It’s basically just pictures of various meals.

And yet, I just keep on postin’. Because I’m the blogging BOSS.

And also because what the hell else am I supposed to do with all the pictures I take from Friday-Sunday? See? It’s a real problem.

On Friday night, we feasted.

On Saturday, I ran.

Taylor brought home my favorite bagels. I wanted to re-marry him all over again.

Then Saturday evening, I enjoyed a kick ass dinner with these two.


In case there were ever any doubts, we are most definitely carnivores.

And Tillman’s delicious tableside s’mores for dessert.

After dinner, we wandered around Bishop Arts District for a bit trying to digest our food and get the most of our $5 valet fee.

Sunday morning I woke up to this text.

I laughed, but then I thought – OH MY GOD SHE’S RIGHT I NEED PANCAKES NOW. So I rolled over, smacked Taylor, and said, “Let’s go to Cracker Barrel!”

My craving fulfilled

Giant Hello Kitty Pez just shot to the top of my Christmas list. Please take note.

And now I am le tired. Because tomorrow is Monday, and that simple fact is enough to exhaust me.


The end.